Working in Switzerland

Hello I am currently working as a jeweller in New Zealand and have
been offered a position with a well known company in Switzerland . I
have not been there before and intend to go for a look in a few
months to see if I like it. I cant think of anything better than
skiing to work . Can anyone tell me anything about working there. I
hear the cost of living is quite high . Are there any Swiss
Ganoksins out there.Do they mostly speak German or is it a Swiss
-German dialect,. Any help much appreciated

Phil W

Dear Phil, Switzerland is a pristine little paradise…very
civilised, very beautiful and very expensive. You would be well
advised to thoroughly investigate living costs before accepting any
employment offer. Language is not too much of a problem except that
the dominant languages are German and French. Italian is also spoken
in those areas adjacent to the Italian border. English is also widely
spoken, but not as a local idiom. Suisse Romansch is also spoken in
some of the more rural areas. The hallmark of Swiss life is
order…everything is closely managed, efficient and predictable.
Some might characterize it as sterile and cold…no matter: there is
a lot of merit in order when one lives in a world that is usually
chaotic Southern Switzerland , surrounding Lake Geneva ( Lac Leman )
is a relatively benign climate whereas one can expect more snow and
cold toward the North in the German speaking areas. Swiss cuisine is
superb and very cosmopolitan Swiss trains are a marvel of effciency
and comfort. Most of the larger lakes have large boats providing
public transportation. You might be able to get up to date
about living costs at a Swiss Embassy or Consulate there
in New Zealand. A Swiss newspaper from the area in which you might be
employed would be very usueful. Your potential employer should be
able to provide that along with other l brochures. Good
Luck, Ron Mills ,Mills Gem Co.Los Osos, Ca.

Attn. Phil In Switzerland there are a few Orchidians (that is what we
call ourselves).

Most of the Swiss are trilingual predominantly German, French,
English & Italian is spoken.

60% of the Provinces (Cantons) are German, 25% French & remaining
15% are Italians.

Most of the Jewelry and Watch companies are in the French regions.
If I had a choice I would live in Luzern.

Cost of living is expensive as compared to the Wasteful ways that we
are use to in US & NZ. But I think you can adapt easy & it will be a
great experience. If you are there in April do visit the Basel Fair
for Jewelers & Watchmakers.

Kenneth Singh

Hi Phil, I would have to say you should definitely make the move.
Although I currently live in New Jersey, I originally come from the
German-Swiss border and I had lived in Switzerland for some time.
It=92s a beautiful country, with so much culture, history and beautyto
offer anyone.

As for the language barrier, Switzerland is cut language-wise into 3
basic parts. North of Italy, the common language is Italian. It=92s a
gorgeous area, filled with mountains and lakes, very warm and
beautiful. Near France, the people are more like the French, and they
speak French. And then to the north, near Germany, the people speak
the Swiss Dialect, as well as German. Most people will however; speak
German as well as English. The whole country is very clean, full of
flowers and very beautiful. The food is excellent, and most important
of all; it has the best chocolate in the world. If you do make the
move, you have to promise me that you will go to Migro (this is a
very nice supermarket) and try the Frey chocolate.

Oh and by the way, my favorite cousin made the opposite move some
years ago, from Zurich to New Zealand.

If you have any questions feel free to contactme.

Have fun,

Hi Phil, In Switzerland in addition to a swiss german dialect,
french and italian are also spoken depending in what part of the
country you live in. I have been there, but it is years ago. High
standard of living and supper clean. Vince, Eugene OR

Are there any Swiss Ganoksins out there.Do they mostly speak German
or is it a Swiss -German dialect,. Any help much appreciated 

My mom lived as a kid in Geneva, and I spent a number of my early
childhood years (from age 1-5) in Zurich. but then moved back to the
states, so I can’t help much with living and working there. But I
can tell you a little of the language. Switzerland is trilingual.
A portion of the country speak italian, a larger portion speaks
french (in geneva, for example), and a larger yet part speaks
german. While so called 'high" german, as you’d find over the
border in germany, is understood and spoken well enough, most swiss
german speakers speak with at least some degree of a swiss german
accent/dialect. Some grammar and words are slightly different, but
mostly it’s a lilting musical quality to the pronunciation that’s
rather strikingly different from the more clipped and clean sound of
“high” german. It’s not too different from the differences in the
english language that you find between N.Z. or Australia, and the
United States. If you already speak german, you’ll get used to the
dialect quickly enough. But as I said, the language you’ll need
depends on where in Switzerland you are. A substantial part of the
country speaks french rather than German.

As to skiing to work? Nice fantasy. Unlikely, though. It’s a
thoroughly modern urbanized country, and unless you’re working in
some small mountain hamlet, you’ll likely be a bit of a drive away
from any ski areas. So I doubt you’ll be skiing to work. But of
course you can enjoy a drive or train ride to wonderful ski areas on
days off.